05 February, 2013

The Precious Pearl!

Since few days I was reading  books on saints and I completed one named The Story of Saint Rita of Cascia ,what a beautiful lady she was,so much she has suffered ,I was so impressed by her that I decided to make her as one of my patron saint. I would love to say her story in short. 

Antonio and Amata Lotti, natives of Roccaporena, a tiny village in the Umbrian Hills of the republic of Cascia, were well-respected peacemakers in their town who was pleading for a child, as since many years after their plead they finally thought of giving up the plead for a child and that is the time when God bless them with a baby girl name Margherita in 1381, as her name meant “pearl” and she was known as Rita. 

Next day after her baptism, her parents made her sleep in cradle and went to few distance from which they could see her and started working in field, one man nearby was hurt badly and his hands were bleeding because of cut in his hands, he came running and saw bees going in and out of Rita’s mouth and she was busy sleeping peacefully without being disturbed, he got busy in waving those bees away and after sometime when all the bees went away when he saw his hands which was waving bees was completely healed. No bleeding! No Cuts was found! She was blessed since birth!

Baptized in the church of St. Augustine in Cascia, Rita became familiar with the local Augustinian nuns of St. Mary Magdalene and was attracted to their way of life.She said her desire to join them but her parents had a different plan for her, they wanted her to get married and she knows that her parents thinking of her security and protection, she said yes to them thinking it the will of God keeping her desire of becoming nun aside.

So Rita obediently married Paolo Mancini with whom she had two sons. At that time there was often open conflict between families, and her husband's family had conflict with other family and her husband Paolo was murdered. She lost her husband at a very young age,yet she forgives the murderer and tries to convince her sons to forgive them but her sons was planning to take revenge for their father’s murderer, so she prays to God very earnestly that he take control so that her son may not lose innocence by doing any wrong act,and within an year, both sons suffered to a deadly illness leaving Rita not only a widow, but also childless. She never knew this way God will answer her!But she never lost faith in Jesus!

After eighteen years of marriage, Rita felt been called by God the second time to religious life in the Augustinian convent. But the sisters were hesitant and refused her request; however, Rita was not discouraged, convinced that she was called to their community.  The sisters even more firmly refused, citing that although Rita had forgiven her husband’s killers, her family had not.  There were members of the rival family in the convent; her presence would be detrimental to community harmony.  

And so, inspired by her three patron saints (Augustine, Nicholas of Tolentino and John the Baptist), Rita set out to make peace between the families.  She went to her husband’s family and requested them to put aside their enmity and stubbornness.  They were convinced by her courage and agreed.  The rival family, astounded by this proposal of peace, also agreed.  The two families exchanged a peace embrace and signed a written agreement, putting the quarrel to rest forever.  A wall painting depicting the scene of the peace embrace was placed on a wall of the Church of Saint Francis in Cascia, an enduring reminder of the power of good over evil and a testament to the widow whose forgiving spirit achieved the impossible. 

At the age of 36, Rita finally was accepted into the Augustinian convent.  She lived a regular life of prayer, contemplation and spiritual reading, according to the Rule of Saint Augustine.  For forty years she lived this routine lifestyle, until fifteen years before her death, on Good Friday 1442, she had an extraordinary experience. Before an image of Jesus that was very dear to her, she was moved by a deeper awareness of the physical and spiritual burden of pain which Christ so freely and willingly embraced for love of her and of all humanity, being moved by Christ’s love she spoke her willingness to relieve Christ’s suffering by sharing even the smallest part of his pain.  Her offer was accepted, her prayer was answered, and Rita was united with Jesus in a profound experience of spiritual intimacy, a thorn from his crown penetrating her forehead.  The wound it caused remained open and visible until the day of her death.

Toward the end of her life, Rita progressively weakened physically.  Several months before her death, she was visited by a relative from Roccaporena who asked if she could do something for her.  Rita at first declined, but seeing her sad face then made a simple request to have a rose from the garden of her family home brought to her.  However, it was January, the dead of winter in the hills of Umbria.  But upon her return home, the relative passed Rita’s family garden and found to her astonishment a single fresh rose in the snow-covered garden on an otherwise barren bush.  She immediately returned to the convent where she presented it to Rita who accepted it with quiet and grateful assurance.  For the four decades she had spent in Casica’s convent, she had prayed especially for her husband Paolo, who had died so violently, and for her two sons, who had died so young.  The dark, cold earth of Roccaporena, which held their mortal remains, had now produced a beautiful sign of spring and beauty out of season.  So, Rita believed, that God had brought forth, through her prayers, their eternal life despite tragedy and violence.  She now knew that she would soon be one with them again.

Rita died peacefully on May 22, 1457.  An old and revered tradition records that the bells of the convent immediately began to ringing unaided by human hands, calling the people of Cascia to the doors of the convent, and announcing the triumphant completion of a life faithfully lived.  The nuns prepared her for burial and placed her in a simple wooden coffin.  A carpenter who had been partially paralysed by a stroke was present there, he voiced the sentiments of many others when he spoke of the beautiful life of this humble nun in bringing lasting peace to the people of Cascia.  “If only I were well,” he said, “I would have prepared a place more worthy of you.”  With those words, Rita’s first miracle was performed, as he was healed.  He fashioned the elaborate and richly decorated coffin which would hold Rita’s body for several centuries.  She was never buried in it, however. So many people came to look upon the gentle face of the “Peacemaker of Cascia” that her burial had to be delayed!!!

It became clear that something exceptional was occurring as her body seemed to be free from nature’s usual course.  It is still preserved today, now in a glass-enclosed coffin, in the basilica of Cascia.

What an inspiring life she lived,so much she suffered and yet was faithful to God,i am so much inspired that decided to make her my patron Saint!So many other details are stored in book which i couldn't write and many miracles too!

I Suggest you all to read this book,if anybody wants to read feel free to take it from me.

She was indeed "THE PRECIOUS PEARL"
Have a lovely day Beautiful People................


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